A/N: I couldn't resist! I had the idea this morning, and the writing has come effortlessly! I can't wait to publish part 3 of "If I Never Knew You," but, until then, enjoy this!

The Midnight Snack

Clary was no saint. And being a Shadowhunter, well, there was definitely a grey area. When the majority of after- dinner activities revolved around murdering other beings, there was no black and white. Jace always encouraged her to not think of it as 'murdering,' but more as 'preventing murdering.' But to Clary, who had two downworlders in her life that she dearly loved, she could see no other avenue. It might have been preventing other's murderers, but how did they not know that this downworlder who had broken Clave law didn't have their own family, family who would consider it murder?

These considerations only came when Clary was thinking too much. It was when she had nothing to do- no art, no training, no reading, no chores- when the philosophy of her calling came screeching back to her. So she'd go to Jace, and they'd talk, because that's what mentors did. And then they'd finish the talking, and they'd do other things, because that's what girls did with their boyfriends. It was the perfect release, and a time where she was never thinking about anything except how damn good it felt.

Even though normal seventeen- year- olds shouldn't be having sex, Clary wasn't normal. She was a Shadowhunter with the hottest boyfriend in the world. Her life had gone at warp speed for the past two years. All in all, a romp in the sack wasn't hurting anything. It did just the opposite. A moment in her boyfriend's arms was all she needed to forget her fears. Some nights, it was the only thing that kept her sane. The sweaty hands, hot kisses, deep whispers- this reminded her that Jace was here and he was hers. And as long as they were together, she had something to fight for.

It was admittedly ridiculous that she felt the need to protect him … Jace was the best Shadowhunter their age, and everyone knew it. To watch him fight was truly a gift of high proportions. He was so skilled, his sinewy muscles all working together in perfect tandem, beautifully deadly. Clary was fairly sure that, if it came down to it, if Jace had fallen and she was fighting the thing that killed him, she would probably not succeed. It was ludicrous for any Shadowhunter to presume that they could conquer the demon that pulled down Jace Herondale. But she was positive that she would die for him. There was no argument, there. Even if she knew she wouldn't survive, she would have to try. And even if she succeeded, it would only be a matter of time. Jace was her protector, on and off the battlefield. Clary could hold her own, but Jace had pulled her out of a bad situation more than once. But if it was an alternate reality, and she could somehow single-handedly vanquish demons, she'd still die soon. Without Jace, there was really no point. And now that she had truly had him, she couldn't imagine that absence of him. Lying in his arms was perfection. She could stay there forever. Except


"God, Clary! Are you trying to wake up every demon in Manhattan?!"

Clary gazed down at her boyfriend affectionately. She was sitting up, her hands on his chest, supporting the rest of her body. She had been debating sneaking downstairs for some food, but it was a hard debate, considering that she'd rather starve than leave her boyfriend during the very few hours of alone time they got. Now, there wasn't much of a debate at all. Even though he had been roused less than thirty seconds ago, she could see him take stock of the room, feel his muscles tense ever so slightly underneath her pressure. He was awake.

Normally, his constant alertness was a great issue. Clary was the kind of person that, before her calling, could sleep through nuclear warfare. Jace fell asleep resentfully, and woke up instantly, no matter what time it was. He had one shot for sleep during a night and Clary knew this all too well by now. It was relatively impossible to sleep once Jace had woken. He got bored easily, and he would want to talk, or kiss, or escape to the training room. She was sure that, besides for the natural gifts that Valentine had bestowed, Jace had become amazing because he probably trained so much in the middle of the night, besotted with insomnia. So, when Clary woke him up, she always felt remorse, knowing that was his last chance for peace for a good 15 hours.

"I'm sorry." She whispered, kissing his chest. "I'm starving."

Jace leered at her, running his fingers down her bare back. He was pleased that she hadn't bothered to cover up. She was learning it was futile. "Burning off some extra calories lately?"

Even in the pure darkness, save for a witchlight on the bedside table, he could see Clary's cheeks color. He loved that about her. She was still blushing months after sexual innuendos became a regular part of his vocabulary around her.

But there was another side to her, and he loved that, too. This was the side that allowed Clary to feel completely comfortable tossing her dark red hair past her shoulder and laugh as she began reaching for discarded clothes. "Yes. I can't believe how much fighting burns," she commented lightly, standing up and sliding Jace's white button up over her naked body. "It's just a good thing that I have all this extra time to relax at night." She smirked at her struck boyfriend, and walked out of their room, still buttoning up his shirt.

Low blow. But Jace was Jace, and he didn't stay down for long. He leapt up and grabbed his boxers, walking out of the room behind his girlfriend. He couldn't resist his final comment to her retreating back. "Fighting? Why, dear Clarissa, we didn't argue tonight."

Clary rolled her eyes. Her abilities in sarcasm had dramatically improved, but Jace was still the master, always able to get the last word, no matter what the subject. Not only was he a fantastic fighter, he was sharp as hell. Sometimes- very rarely, but sometimes- it was frustrating having a boyfriend as perfect as him.

She comforted herself with the obvious knowledge that Jace couldn't get enough of her. No sooner after she had opened the fridge, squinting at the light that had been emitted, Jace grabbed her waist and spun her around effortlessly, placing her on the counter.

"You should know by now to always wear underwear if you want to get anything done." Jace whispered hotly in her ear, placing a quick kiss at her earlobe. He began making a trail of kisses down to her shoulder, already working on the buttons to his shoulder.

Clary arched her back. She was one of the more powerful Shadowhunters, especially of the female category, but by the Angel, Jace could turn her into a pile of mush with just a look, even after over a year of dating. The only muscles that she could get to work when Jace was working her were the ones that pulled him closer to her. She was fine settling with those for now. As Jace held her up with one hand and worked the buttons on her shirt, she wrapped both of her hands around his neck and worked on marking him in a way that yelled that he was carnally hers. Her legs, not needing to hold her body up, worked to pull him closer, wrapping around his waist. His mouth- now buried in her breasts, performing a delicious assault on them. Her hands- playing with his blonde hair, her nails- digging into his neck with the kind of force that required a healing rune on the victim. His hands- pulling her hips closer together, squeezing the bones to leave behind dark blue handprints. Their dalliances were heady, memorable and extremely passionate. But they had never had sex on the kitchen counter. Her first time was also the least untraditional spot, up until now. On her seventeenth birthday, she had plans to spend the day with everyone in Idris, courtesy of a portal drawn by Magnus. So she was not surprised when Jace woke her up on her birthday morning at 12:01 am to celebrate her birthday in style.

He had prepared a picnic outside in the greenhouse. With amazing food, a warm atmosphere and comfortable blankets and cushy pillows littering every surface, it wasn't surprising that Clary chose that night for her first time. They had been dancing around the possibility for quite some time. On her seventeenth birthday, it was inevitable.

Her first time was amazing, but the location was the riskiest part of the entire endeavor. They had spent much of the last three months enjoying the creative process in the privacy of their own rooms, purely because of the other occupants in the house. Of course, Isabel knew everything, and Alec and Magnus somehow knew everything, but even Simon was in the dark about the majority of things, a feat that shocked Clary, especially considering that he was dating Isabel Lightwood, a girl who had a gold medal in gossip and a silver in lack of self control. Clary was shocked that Isabel had been able to keep the secret for so long, but eternally grateful.

Considering that they had done basically everything in bed, it wasn't surprising that they were branching out on locations. Clary hardly cared where they did it … two months ago, the issue of getting caught would be, well, an issue, but now, she just wanted him. Their coupling had not lessened the desire; it had increased it ten fold.

She was really hungry, though. In a lost corner of her mind, she was debating with herself on whether or not it was important to eat in the next half an hour. Her carnal side was winning by a landslide, but her logical side was putting up quite a fight. It had been hours since Clary sat at dinner with Jace, stealing kisses with Maryse wasn't looking. Of course, everyone else was, but Clary was used to PDAs, and proud that she had someone so fantastic to kiss, so she didn't let that bother her. They had eaten way too quickly, and Clary had eaten faster than most, considering that Isabel required a good two hours to make her over into the sexy dagger-wielding babe that would enter Pandemonium tonight.

Tonight had been an important one. It was the first time she had gone on a raid to Pandemonium and had actually been allowed to participate as a Shadowhunter. She had gone before to have fun and had gone on a couple to observe, but she had actually been allowed to kill people last night, which was, by the end of the night, definitely something to be thankful for. The kind of power associated with that was insanity, and just another grey area she had forced herself to become comfortable with.

Everything about her life was infinitely more passionate now. She fought hard and made aggressive love. She felt too much for Jace; sometimes it scared her.

When her love was threatened, she snapped. She had done it many times when they were fighting Valentine, but she had experienced nothing close to how she felt tonight.

Jace was bait. They always had bait. They'd go flirt with the victim and size him or her up. They'd take the victim to the back room, reveal their true self, and kill them. It was that simple.

Jace made great bait. He was gorgeous and everyone in the room could see that. Clary was used to eyes being on them, but she found she felt uncomfortable when she was falling in the background, and girls were swarming on him. She couldn't blame them, but Jace was comfortable with the attention. Clary didn't like being threatened, and that vampire with the white blonde hair and purple blue nails that flashed in front of her eyes before landing on her neck threatened her.

They had fought. Clary watched neutrally as Jace flirted with her, watched as she pushed her hands through his thick gold hair, but when she pulled him to the backroom, she snapped. She was after them in a second and got there just as the vampire kissed his chin, giggling the whole time. Her dagger was out in another second, and she was diving for her pretty long neck.

But the vampire was strong, and fast. And she had avoided the blade in an instant, swiping her nails across Clary's neck in retaliation. Clary, loosing blood fast, had pulled the only move she could think of. She somersaulted on the floor and retrieved her dagger and threw it right at her, aiming straight for her heart.

The vampire was gone in an instant. Clary stared at the empty space that she once filled, ignoring Jace who was rushing to her side, his stele already at the ready.

"What the HELL was that?" Isabelle screeched. "What part of protocol do you not understand? We come in for backup! We do NOT dive on our enemies and get sliced in the throat. If we didn't have a stele, you'd be dead, Clary. What the hell." She kept raging, but Alec helped everyone by ushering her out of the room awkwardly saying, "She should be fine, she's probably just upset. We're glad you're okay… hell of a throw."

Clary refused to make eye contact with Jace's searching eyes. She knew she'd see things she didn't want to see: confusion, concern, anger, worry, and frustration. Instead, she focused on the room she was in. It was probably the only room in all of New York City that was regularly abandoned. It wasn't attractive at all with it's peeling white wallpaper and dark wood floors, stained with all sorts of blood Clary was sure she could see only because she had the sight. There was a glass window, shining because the bright New York City lights were penetrating the glass. She could just make out the empire state building in the distance.


She had shaken her head. "I'm not ready to talk about it." She whispered. She was sure that that, at least, was due to the fact that her skin covering her vocal cords was still knotting together.

She didn't need to look at him to know he was nodding his assent. They had an agreement. They accepted that both of them had painful things in their past, and sometimes, things would come up that they might not be ready to talk about. They could always say "I'm not ready," and the other would have to honor that. Clary came up with that scheme. Her hope was that Jace would always eventually explain to her, but this was a no- pressure alternative. Jace, over all other people, understood the need to privatize issues, at least for a while.

"Okay." His voice sounded hoarse. She still refused to look at him, but she was sure his face would be pale, his eyes maybe a little damp. He never feared showing emotion around her. Once the dam broke, it rarely stopped. "I'm so glad you're okay." He whispered, grabbing her forehead and kissing her. "We're okay, we're gonna be okay." She let him hug her until he believed it.

She was so lost in the memory, her body was on autopilot. But she felt the absence of him like a gaping hole was starting to open in her chest. She looked up at his face, gazing down on hers. His hands were still around her hips, and she was sure her entire chest was red from Jace love, but he didn't seem angry. Still …

"What's wrong?" She asked, bringing her hand up to touch his cheek.

He leaned his face into her touch. "You almost went away tonight." He admitted. "And you won't tell me why you put yourself in that kind of danger. I don't understand what happened."

Clary sighed.

"I'm ready to talk about it."

Jace nodded. "What happened in Pandemonium?"

"I …" Clary tried to search for the words that explained exactly how furious seeing that blonde bitch wrapped around her man, their hair tangling together in a pale yellow mass, her stupid painted fingernails laced around his neck. But she couldn't find the right words. She wasn't sure the right words existed, really. So she settled for the next best thing: frustration. "Damnit, Jace, you're mine!" She yelled.

"Whoa." Jace started hastily buttoning up her shirt. "If you keep yelling, mom's going to come down here." He reminded her.

She shrugged away from his hands, grabbing to complete the rest of the job herself. It was true; they wouldn't be having sex again tonight.

"Just … that girl, you, … I was jealous. I went after you two. When I saw her all over you, I snapped. I wanted to kill her. I've never wanted to kill someone before. I knew I should. But I never wanted someone to die. I just wanted to save other people. It freaked me out. And, on top of it all, you let her kiss you!"

Poor Jace. He looked a little bewildered. Then he smiled.

"What the hell? Bastard. Why are you smiling?"

"Excuse me, Clarissa. I am not a bastard. I have no mother. I have way too many fathers. I don't know what the technical term for that is, but I can assure you, I am no bastard."

Clary rolled her eyes. "Humor, now? Can you be more inappropriate?"

Jace laughed, but he saw Clary's glare and he sobered up. "Look, Clary, every Shadowhunter goes through these conflicts. Yes, it can be scary when you realize that you enjoy killing, or at least an aspect of it. I never went through that, but Isabel, Alec, they all had to face that. The truth is, after a while, you do find some kind of sick joy in it … the rush that come with that kind of power is … insane. It's normal. It doesn't mean you're a killer, or a sociopath. It means you're becoming a Shadowhunter."

Clary nodded, thankful for that. Thankful that Jace made that entire speech without one blatantly sarcastic comment. "Thank you." She whispered.

Jace nodded. "As for your jealousy issues, I love that. I will not do anything to quell that, because seeing you jump on that vampire girl and knowing that you were jealous was the hottest thing I have ever seen."

Clary was at a loss of what to do … laugh or slap him for being such an ass. She did both, telling him exactly what she thought of him. "Asshole. That's not healthy boyfriend behavior."

"On the contrary. You're not being a very good girlfriend, getting all insecure like that."

"Quit that. Tell me I'm crazy, tell me you don't want anyone else, tell me that girl was awful and it disgusted you being with him." She knew she was being crazy, desperate, everything that she hated in the girls at her school, but she couldn't help it. She had to know.

"God, Clary, you're the only girl for me. I loved you when I thought you were my sister. I will love you no matter what. I will love you until I die, and if there's a life after that, I'll love you then. Nothing I do with another girl means anything to me if it's not you."

That did it. The dam broke. She was crying in an instant, breathing in the scent of his shoulder. "I love you. Thank you." She whispered into his ear.

His only response was to hold her closer. He let the tears run out of her system before he pulled back, looking her straight in the eye. "Okay. Are you okay now, crazy girl?"

"I'm good." Clary nodded.

"Good." Jace said, letting out a laugh. "Now, let's get some food for you."

But now Clary had a one- track mind that didn't food in the slightest. "Actually …" she said, her voice dropping to husky whisper she wasn't aware she could formulate, "I think the only thing I'm hungry for right now is my boyfriend."

"I think that can be arranged." Jace whispered back in the same gravelly voice. He reached under her legs and lifted her body to his chest. Clary held him close right back.

Just as they were leaving the room, Clary gave a start. "Wait! Didn't Maryse make chocolate cake last night?"


A/N: Fin! I hope you enjoyed! Drop some review love, please!